Annika Ekdahl & HDK
FOR A BODY. 2010-2011. Tapestry and the installation created during the collaboration with students
My contribution to Kaunas Biennial TEXTILE ’11, the tapestry Definitely Gold, shows a body, a dressed up person, surrounded by decorative and beautiful things, ornaments, flowers, gold and thin layers of colours. Things I have appreciated since childhood and in this work decided to recognize.
I will now tell you another story about what I treasure. It’s about my students.
My assignment as Visiting Professor in Textile Art at HDK, School of Design & Crafts at The University of Gothenburg, ends in October. It has been a privilege to interact with the next generation of textile artists, to follow their processes and share their dreams. Also, it has been an opportunity for me to make statements and express opinions about textile art. I have done that. I’ve said that contemporary textile art is about image, structure and performance. It appears in three scales; stitch, body and space. These variables are combined in every way imaginable and I don’t expect everybody to agree with me. But I hope my thoughts can function as a starting point and a take-off for new statements.
At HDK’s textile department, we – my nearest colleague, lecturer Birgitta Nordström and the rest of the staff – decided to focus on the three scales. We began with the stitch level, zoomed out to body related/sized projects and will go upscale to space. Just to make us aware of what we do, why we do it and what we avoid.
This year we’ve had FOR A BODY as an intersection. It has been encouraging to see that the students are independent, brave and wild enough to present the most diverse interpretation of this theme!
So, when I got an invitation to show one of my big scale tapestries here in Kaunas, I knew I wanted to come together with all of them who have taught me so much – my students and my colleague – and present the result of their investigation: What do I want to create for a body?
Kaunas has for years been an important place for my understanding of how textile art can be discussed and exposed. The biennials have also been a demonstration of engagement and solidarity. What can be better as a last gesture from me to my students than bringing them to Kaunas? I know they will be encouraged, challenged and as well treated and respected as I always have been.
The students are:
Nanaka Adachi, Emelie Andersson, Ida Andersson, Klara Berge, Kerstin Björk, Amy Bondesson, Sara Erkers, Pernilla Eskilsson, Klara Espmark, Anni Foglert, Mathilda Franzén, Hållams Linnea Henriksson, Brita Huggert, Annie Johansson, Jessica Johannesson, Boa Jung, Lina Lundin, Maya Lundin, Eva Mustonen, Elina Nilsson, Emelie Röndahl, Tina Skantze, Hlif Torisdottir, Linn Warme, Agnetha Östlundh.
Interview with Pernilla Eskilsson from 23 min: 23 s